Government launches Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp

Government launches Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp

The UK Government has today launched a GOV.UK Coronavirus Information service on WhatsApp.


The new free to use service aims to provide official, trustworthy and timely information and advice about coronavirus (COVID-19), and will further reduce the burden on NHS services.

This will help combat the spread of coronavirus misinformation in the UK, as well as helping ensure people stay home, protect the NHS and save lives.

The GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service is an automated ‘chatbot’ service which will allow the British public to get answers to the most common questions about coronavirus direct from government.

The service will provide information on topics such as coronavirus prevention and symptoms, the latest number of cases in the UK, advice on staying at home, travel advice and myth busting.

The service will also allow the government to send messages to all opted-in users if required.

To use the free GOV.UK Coronavirus Information Service on WhatsApp, simply add 07860 064422 in your phone contacts and then message the word ‘hi’ in a WhatsApp message to get started.

A set of menu options is then presented which the user can choose from and then be sent relevant guidance from GOV.UK pages as well as links to GOV.UK for further information.

Prof Yvonne Doyle, Medical Director, Public Health England, said:

This service will help us ensure the public has a trusted source for the right information about coronavirus, updated with the latest public health guidance and providing assurance that they are not misled by any of the false information circulating.

Matt Idema, Chief Operating Officer, WhatsApp, said:

At difficult times like these, people are using WhatsApp more than ever to connect with and support their friends, family and communities. We are pleased to be able to provide the UK Government with the communications tools to help them answer the public’s questions about the virus with reliable, timely health advice, in order to keep people safe.

NYCommunity Policing:friends against scams: free online training 4pm March 26th

[North Yorkshire Police Notification System] Member Portal banner5193+Coronavirus+Scam+Postcard+V3

The Economic Crime Unit at North Yorkshire Police receive regular updates from Action Fraud, The National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, National Trading Standards and other organisations highlighting new scams we are seeing which are preying on resident’s fear in the wake of the corona virus pandemic. I would draw your attention to a press release from National Trading Standards which summarises the current scams we are seeing ( ). I have also attached a postcard from National Trading Standards which is a handy easy reference guide for you to print off or to circulate amongst your family and friends.

I would encourage readers of this email to visit the ‘Friends Against Scams’   website where you can sign up to become a Friend Against Scams. It is an online training session which will take around 20 minutes to complete. It will raise your awareness of fraud and give you valuable tips and tools to prevent you becoming a victim.
In addition I am doing a Facebook Live session tomorrow on the North Yorkshire Police Facebook page to advice residents as to the latest scams we are seeing here in North Yorkshire and how to stay safe. This will start at 4pm Thursday 26th March and I understand this is the first one of its kind by North Yorkshire Police. I hope you can watch.
Stay safe.
Andy Fox
Financial Abuse Safeguarding Officer
Economic Crime Unit, North Yorkshire Police

Viral Kindness: help from the local communty

A band of volunteers have posted contact information for seeking free help locally. In case you need it, here it is again:

                  co-ordinator is Gill Hudson,                                                     phone 07803122764

A buddy can help with picking up shopping, posting mail,urgent supplies or a friendly phone call



Over the last few days we have had 2 benches vandalised on the Garth, one which is beyond repair.

[North Yorkshire Police Notification System] Member Portal bannerBetween 1830hrs and 2145hrs on the 21st March, benches in the ground of Cawood Castle were knocked over and damaged. If you have any information, please contact NYP on 101 ref 12200049386

pic by Gaz Hughes

At the Playing Fields, behind the goal posts 2 sections of perimeter fence are destroyed.



Really, now of all times??

Joint statement on new measures to stop spread of Coronavirus, NY Police

[North Yorkshire Police Notification System] Member Portal banner

Lisa Winward, Chief Constable of North Yorkshire Police, Andrew Brodie, Chief Fire Officer of North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, and Julia Mulligan, North Yorkshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner have issued the following statement on new measures to stop spread of Coronavirus

“It is our job to keep North Yorkshire safe and we can only do that if you follow the instruction to stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.

“We know the vast majority of you have already been taking action to stop the spread of Coronavirus, and we thank you for those efforts. But some have not – and the crowds we saw in some parts of North Yorkshire this weekend illustrated that all too clearly.

“Now there is no ambiguity, there can be no question – if you do not need to be outside for an essential reason, to buy food or medicine or to exercise once a day, you must stay at home.

“Anyone who thinks this does not apply to them is putting lives at risk. North Yorkshire Police will use all powers we have to stop that, to keep us all safe and to ultimately save lives.

“Our emergency services will be here to protect you throughout this national emergency. We know these are unsettling times. They are unprecedented times. But across North Yorkshire we stand together, and together we’ll get through it.”

Food Bank Donation

The Parish Council are pleased to support the community food bank. Here’s the FB post from March 23rd:


“Food Bank Update:

We have had a generous donation of £250 from the Parish Council. This will allow us to buy additional much needed items. Thank you very much!

Kathy reports that the first collection this afternoon went very well – thank you all for helping your fellow residents.

Please note the following changes to allow for more convenient drop-offs:

Drop-off @TheJolly
Monday, Wednesday and Friday 6-7pm
Saturday 2-3pm

We will update you once we have collected enough items to hand out boxes.

Food items:
• Cereal
• Soup
• Pasta
• Rice
• Tinned tomatoes/ pasta sauce
• Lentils, beans and pulses
• Tinned meat
• Tinned vegetables
• Tea/coffee
• Tinned fruit
• Biscuits
• UHT milk
• Fruit juice
• Baby formula (only if requested)

Non-food items:
• Hygiene products
• Toiletries
• Nappies (only if requested)
• Disinfectant wipes/gel
• Pet food”